The adventuresome life of a Great Pyrenees/Newfoundland dog in Northwestern Ontario

Archive for the ‘Around Town’ Category

Who put Walter Pigeon on a Hit List?

Thursday morning, after Elizabeth let me out of the car at the bookshop, I did my usual security check of the parking lot before heading in to greet customers. Usually this process just involves checking to see if Isabella the bulldog at the Greek restaurant next door left me any messages, and maybe leaving her a message to say I received and understood hers, but this was not the case on Thursday. On Thursday, I found a visitor who was desperately in need of help.

I was about to pick him up and bring him to Elizabeth, but she saw me heading into the corner and knew by the way I was striding that I’d seen something she needed to know about. She’s pretty smart, my scribe is [Scribal note: Thank you, Stella.]. When she saw me lean in to pick our visitor up, she said, “Leave it, Stella!” That means she thinks it’s something she needs to look after, or that it might not be safe for me. So, I backed up.

Elizabeth took me into the shop. Then she went up to the attics and pulled out an empty liquor box. She put a cloth bag in the bottom and ran back outside with it. I could hear her running around and talking to our visitor, who was a little bit frightened of her, I think. She caught the visitor and gently put him in the box. Then she closed the flaps, found some heavier cardboard and a brick to put on top. She left an air hole so the captive could breathe, and carried it all downstairs. Then she washed her hands.

I was very curious to know what was going on. I trust Elizabeth to do the right thing. But her behaviour was very curious. I couldn’t understand why she would put our guest in a closed box. Usually, they are welcome to just come in and walk around the shop!

Elizabeth picked up the phone and made a call to our friend the Lil the Egg Lady. It turns out that Lil the Egg Lady also operates a wildlife rehabilitation centre (Sooo. That’s why she smells so interesting…) “Hi, Lil! It’s Elizabeth. I’m calling because Stella found an injured pigeon in our parking lot. I don’t know what’s wrong with it; it can still run around, and it seems pretty alert, but it’s got a lot of drying blood on it, I think. It was really tacky when I picked it up.”

Lil explained that several pigeons had come in from our that seemed to be poisoned. She thought maybe the tackiness was drying pigeon vomit. Eeeeuw. I went and got a drink of water. I’d had the pigeon in my mouth. I could have told Elizabeth it wasn’t blood that was making the flapper tacky. But she hadn’t asked me. Still, I hadn’t thought it was… you know. Yech!

After the call, The Scribe told me Lil the Egg Lady was coming to get the pigeon soon. It would stay quiet in the box, thinking it was night. If it was injured, then it was safer there than in the parking lot or lane. Big Croaking Black Flappers live there, too, and they like to eat pigeons. Walter (Elizabeth’s idea to call him that) was fortunate that I found him.

Well, Lil the Egg Lady came and took Walter to rehab. The day went on as usual. Later in the afternoon, Elizabeth got in touch with Lil and asked her how Walter was doing. Was he badly hurt? Was he going to be all right? The answer was shocking.

“He has no injuries. He fell victim to the sticky traps people have been setting out for pigeons. Seems poison wasn’t working well enough for them. Stella almost had a permanent pigeon mustache. Even goo gone isn’t cutting it. Poor wee thing.”

Elizabeth responded, “Oh, no! What harm are they doing that people need to do them such cruelty! I wonder who is doing this…. Are you able to help Walter at all? Does the stickiness wear off over time if you can give him a home ’til then? I’ll gladly give you a donation to help look after him if you can. Or does he need to be euthanized? Please let me know whatever, Lil. And if you could take a picture of him, for me, I will put my head together with Stella and we’ll write about this. Thank you.”

“I took some photos and hope to also add to my blog.

“Several stores took wasp and bird sticky traps off the market after the photo of several chickadees stuck to one hit the net. But they still have them in Kenora stores. I tried Goo Gone, dish soap and rubbing and only moved it around. In desperate measures, I coated it with very fine sand to keep him from sticking to things and so he didn’t preen pure goo. His beak was glued shut from preening. I will keep him/it as I love my pidgies. Hopefully he will start a molt and get new ones, but have to figure out how to get a molt started.”

Poor Walter! He would have died a gruesome death if I hadn’t found him when I did. He could have starved or died of thirst or been attacked by a cat or Raven… How could two-leggers do such a horrible thing! Like Elizabeth, I fail to see how these gentle Rock Doves could possibly bother anyone. They live on the downtown rooftops, minding their own business. They frequently fly over a couple of blocks to hang out at their diner along the railway tracks, where they eat grain that has spilled out of the grain cars. They’re pretty friendly chaps, and they make a lovely sort of purring coo noise that travels down the chimneys in the wintertime (they congregate around the chimney openings to get warm in the winter).

Lil said we could share her pictures with you. If you’d like to follow Walter’s progress, she will probably keep us all informed on her blog, Iggy’s Wildlife Revisited. You’ll also learn about other adventures she has helping animals there. Anyway, here’s what Walter looked like while she was examining him:

You can see how Walter’s feathers are stuck together so he can’t fly anymore.

His backside is a real mess, And look at his feet! Poor Walter…

Oh, dear… It looks like I left some of my wool on him.

I feel confident that Lil the Egg Lady will look after him well. We’ll be keeping tabs on his progress when she visits us at the shop, too. And if I catch the two-legger who’s laying traps like this in our neighbourhood, GRRRRR… I might not be able to keep myself from biting him/her! If you know who it is, PLEASE! tell them to STOP!


Excuse Me?

We were just at the end of our ride to work this morning when we were stopped by the police. They were letting everyone else through the main intersection of town but us. So I stuck my head out of the window to give the young officer a talking to. He was being polite, so I’d be polite, too, but I would be firm. I had a job to do. Let us get to work, please.

The officer came over. “I’m sorry,” he said to my chauffeur. “You are going to be stopped for a while. The Prime Minister is coming through.”

My chauffeur agreed to wait.

I, on the other hand, gave the officer my best look of regal offence from the back seat. I willed him to understand, but it appeared he was not fluent in dog looks. I rumbled, We’re late for work. No one takes precedence over the Queen of the Boreal Forest. We must be allowed through!

Elizabeth understood me. “We have to wait, Stella. Sorry. Just wait and see, though. Maybe he’ll be riding his moose.”


Oh. I see.

We remain disappointed.


Downton Kenora 7: Previously…, Updates & More

Last episode, I showed you Bonnie’s second Antique Room and how she was fixing it up. Well, boxes and boxes and boxes have been arriving at her barn, all of them full of new things to fill both her rooms up before the tourist season arrives. Every time she comes to work, she’s bringing in some more wares to add to her inventory list and to price and put on the shelves.

She's got ole looking new stuff...

She’s got old-looking new stuff…

And remember I told you how Bonnie and Elizabeth disappeared for a couple of days? They went off to Winnipeg to an auction, among other things. Sadly, they were outbid on many of the things they had hoped to bring back. But they didn’t come back empty handed. Oh, no! Bonnie got several items. This is the only lot she’s brought to the shop yet.

Bonnie doesn't usually buy china. But something about this Nippon ware caught her attention.

Bonnie doesn’t usually buy china. But something about this Nippon ware caught her attention.

Oh! The scribe just tells me that there was an Elephant with this lot that Bonnie wanted. Sometimes you must get things you aren’t really excited about in order to get the item you really want. She wants to enjoy the Elephant and some of the other wins for a little bit before she sells them, Elizabeth says.

I don’t even know what an Elehpant looks like. I have heard, however, that they are huge and that they have a deep-seated fear of an animal that is just itsy bitsy compared to them. So, Bonnie went to work to make her home more hospitable, more Elephant-friendly. And now we have a different sort of visitor at the bookshop.

I hope it doesn't get into my cookie bag.

I hope it doesn’t get into my cookie bag.

Another update… The village on the ice has disappeared. We’ve had some very warm weather, and the ice is disappearing, too. So all the fishing nomads have packed up their huts and … well, I don’t know what they are doing now. Before they left, though, Bonnie must have paid them a visit, ’cause look what we found sitting on the shelf in the new room:

I can't quite reach it. Maybe if they bring the ladder back into the room I can nip in and get a free fish dinner.

I can’t quite reach it. Maybe if they bring the ladder back into the room I can nip in and get a free fish dinner.

On Saturday on our way home, we got behind a growly beast that was driving very slowly, indicating a turn then not turning and generally snarling up traffic (well, two of us were following anyway) until it finally turned onto our Big Gravel Path. Elizabeth thought that the driver might be lost, so she stopped to see if she could help. The two-legger driving said that they were searchers. The police have suspended their search, but others in the community are carrying on because there is still no sign of Delaine Copenace. They didn’t come down Little Gravel Path, so we aren’t sure just how they were searching. Not door to door, anyhow. I hope they find her. Her family is worried sick.

This is turning out to be a long episode, so I’m going to close it with a few photos from today’s room on the tour, Bonnie’s first Antiques Room. If you see something you like, please drop in and pay us a visit. Maybe I’ll let you take it home with you! BOL

What you see from the doorway.

What you see from the doorway.


A nice East Lake Washstand and another wall.

A nice East Lake Washstand and another wall.

But don’t just stand in the doorway. If you don’t come in and turn around, you’ll miss out on a whole lot of other eye candy! Every room is like that.

Bonnie has all kinds of interesting little odds and ends stashed in her rooms. Two-leggers really enjoy exploring them.

Bonnie has all kinds of interesting little odds and ends stashed in her rooms. Two-leggers really enjoy exploring them.

I think Bonnie’s rooms will always be under construction. She’s in them changing them every day she’s working. So, if you drop in and don’t recognise them from our photos, well, don’t panic. We’ll help you get re-oriented. ~:o)=

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